More on School Organization and Accountability
Teachers' Decision-Making Power and School Conflict
Published in the April 1996 issue of Sociology of Education, this is a research report examining what difference the amount of power exercised by teachers in schools makes for how well schools function. It uses national data to examine the effects of two kinds of teacher power in regards to core educational issues in schools -- collective faculty policy influence and individual teacher classroom autonomy -- on the degree of conflict among teachers, students and administrators. In particular, the results draw attention to the importance of teacher power over activities concerned with the crucial, but oft overlooked, sorting and socialization functions in schools. Download a copy.
Organizational Control in Secondary Schools
Published in the summer 1994 issue of Harvard Educational Review, this research report uses national data to address the debate between two prominent and contradictory views of organizational control in schools. One view holds that schools lack appropriate levels of control over teachers and their work and, hence, are overly decentralized organizations. The other holds that teachers lack appropriate levels of control over key decisions and policies and, hence, schools are overly centralized organizations. Download a copy.
Loosely Coupled Organizations Revisited
Winner of the Harry Braverman Award from the Society for the Study of Social Problems. Published in the 1993 volume of Research in the Sociology of Organizations, this is a critique of the view, popular among both researchers and reformers, that elementary and secondary schools are the epitome of loosely coupled systems and lack internal coordination, control and accountability in regard to the work of teachers. Download a copy.